January NewsWaves 2019

Table of Contents


Three Fishing & Boating Trends to Watch for in 2019

Fishing and boating participation is on the upswing! But now is not the time to rest on our recent accomplishments. The team here at RBFF will continue to promote fishing and boating as the antidote to the stresses of modern life, and here is what we hope the entire industry looks out for in 2019 and beyond:

  • Multicultural inclusion. Data shows that Caucasians are more likely to participate in outdoor activities (73% versus 62% for the general population). But if we only focus on that group, the industry we love so much will be left behind. The multicultural audience is rapidly growing and it’s our duty as a community to welcome and engage with this audience. Specifically, Hispanic and female participation in fishing is on the rise. RBFF will continue to focus on these groups in 2019, expanding upon our successful women’s initiative, Making Waves.
  • While RBFF, the fishing and boating industry and other groups are doing a fantastic job at bringing new participants to the water, we need to pay even closer attention to the retention and reactivation pieces of the R3 puzzle. New anglers are still highly likely to lapse out of the sport after just their first year. We must all work together to ensure the entire fishing and boating experience – from the license and registration process, to the retail counter, to the way our waterways are managed – is as seamless and enjoyable as possible. RBFF is helping this by partnering with retail partners, state agencies and Grow Boating to ensure these new customers are engaged and have great experiences at every touchpoint.
  • Our world is becoming increasingly connected. Fishing and boating can continue to be the antidote to modern life, but that doesn’t mean we can overlook the new technologies our audience is using to consume media. Adults in the United States are consuming more data than ever – up more than one hour per day to a total of 11. We must all gain a better understanding of where our audience spends time in this connected world and make sure we are effectively reaching them on those channels.

The trends show that fishing and boating is as relevant as ever. Now is the time to capitalize on this ever-expanding audience and make sure our favorite pastimes stay top-of-mind for American consumers.

What trends are you focusing on in 2019? Join the conversation on RBFF’s LinkedIn and twitter channels to share your perspective.


How One Marina Lights Up Business During the Holidays

What started as a way for Mount Dora Boating Center & Marina General Manager Joe Lewis to show his love of the holidays has proven to bring lasting effects to his business.

Joe Lewis loves the holidays. So much so that he goes all-out when it comes to decorations. And though Joe’s wife loves the holidays too, she’s not too keen on the bright lights Joe would string around their Florida home. Instead of giving up altogether, Joe decided to move his light show to his business.

With a broader platform, Joe knew his light show could make a bigger impact on his community, so he teamed up with the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves and Toys for Tots. Instead of paying a fee to tour the lights show, Mount Dora Boating Center & Marina asks attendees to bring one new, unwrapped toy or a cash donation to gain admission.

But what started as a hobby for Joe has turned into something that has brought tremendous notoriety to his marina. “Just Google Mount Dora Christmas Lights and you’ll see what I mean,” says Joe. By turning his marina into an incredible holiday display and gaining media coverage, Joe brings in the entire community, creating and retaining customers along the way.

While it’s hard to say for sure that the light show has led to an increase in sales, it’s no surprise that many customers, both new and returning, talk about the light show whenever they come in to the marina, no matter the time of year. “We’ve been told our display has attracted people to Mount Dora who then decided to move here. One of those people has indeed bought several boats from us,” added Joe.

As a huge bonus, the light show has increased employee satisfaction and has acted as a teambuilding activity for the marina. Joe’s staff is eager to help create the display every year and they feel a sense of pride in their work as they bring family and friends to view the show.

As for how you can create a similar experience for you customers, Joe says “the Holidays are a special time of year, and hopefully it will always stay that way. Anything that brings people together in the spirit of sharing and giving will pay dividends thought the year. Helping a local charity in their efforts is the best and easiest way to get started and see where it grows from there.”

Looking to host your own event? Head to the RBFF Resource Center for event planning materials and to learn more about recruitment, retention and reactivation (R3).